The beet is the melancholy vegetable, the one most willing to suffer. You can’t squeeze blood out of a turnip . ..
Tom Robbins Jitterbug Perfume
Does that mean that Beets are inherently Klingon? Especially when you consider that the Kingons were based on the USSR….
Obama doesn’t like beets but I think they are a perfect food, they are even the name of a fake pop band. Eastern European countries are especially known for their love of the beet, most notably used in Borscht. Most Westerners usually roast them in the oven or cut them up into salads or they roast them and then add them to salads. Beets are also used to sweeten some dishes.
Healthy types enjoy beets not just because of their taste but also because they have many desirable nutritional qualities.
RawVeg.info says they are both detoxifying and full of antioxidants
Beets are another high-antoxidant veggie, with an ORAC score of 1840, and a total antioxidant concentration of 1.98. They contain many healthful substances: betaine (aka: trimethylglycine, TMG), betalains, betacyanin, betanin, folate, iron, and fiber. Betaine helps convert homocysteine into methionine, preventing heart disease.
Beet fiber seems to be particularly health-promoting. Pectin, a soluble fiber in beets, binds toxins, heavy metals, and excess hormones that have been dumped into the gut from the liver. The toxins are passed out instead of being reabsorbed.
Some people say that beets can even extend your life.
I like to buy them at the farmer’s market with the greens attached because then it is two meals for the price of one. The beet greens have a similar nutritional profile to Swiss chard and mixed with the beet root they are pretty much an unstoppable force of goodness.
Cruising the net the other day I came across a very strange recipe that utilized both the root and the leafy part in a pasta dish. Beets and Greens pasta moved to the top of my list of recipes to try since I just got some at the farmer’s market on Saturday. The meal was quick, easy, and fantastic. Mr. Smurf gobbled it down like he had been standing in a line all day waiting for beets.The noodles turned intensely fuchsia from the beet juice which might even make it kid friendly. Beets are very earthy tasting though so maybe not.
I changed the recipe just a little bit and later realized how much it resembled a certain Klingon dish so I give you:
1 bunch beets, with greens, divided and chopped
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 small onion, diced
.5 tsp dried red pepper flakes
5 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 cup vegetable broth
3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
Zest of 1 lemon
2 Tbsp. each of basil and chives
Salt & pepper
½ lbs linguine
First, get a pot of water going for the pasta and then prep all the other ingredients. When the water is boiling add cook the pasta according to directions. Meanwhile, saute the onion and red pepper flakes until the onions are soft. Then add the garlic and the beet roots. After another minute or two when the beets are soft add the broth, the zest, and the beet greens. Cover and cook until the greens are wilted. Add the herbs, the lemon juice, salt and pepper and cook for another minute before you toss with the pasta.
Enjoy with (vegan) Bloodwine!